I made a pilgrimage to New York in 2005 (or so? i can’t remember). No money. No food. Newly diagnosed with type-1 diabetes. My friend and I rode with some truck driver. We were carried on a wave of inscrutable compassion.
We arrived on the 4th of July. We met two guys in Times Square, one from Ghana and one from Puerto Rico. They let us live with them, in their tiny little overpriced studio apartment, for ~2 months.
I would love to be able to find them. Great guys.
Experiences like this one give me reason to have confidence in some sayings of Jesus.
Jesus tells us to give up worry about material stuff. It makes no sense to the little-minded ones, but when you experience the feeling of ‘entering the stream’, there is not a doubt about it. It is an experience. There is some strange compassionate force existing in between, around, above and beneath rational and irrational reality.
Check this out:
Good News Translation (GNT)
25 “This is why I tell you: do not be worried about the food and drink you need in order to stay alive, or about clothes for your body. After all, isn’t life worth more than food? And isn’t the body worth more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds: they do not plant seeds, gather a harvest and put it in barns; yet your Father in heaven takes care of them! Aren’t you worth much more than birds? 27 Can any of you live a bit longer[a] by worrying about it?
28 “And why worry about clothes? Look how the wild flowers grow: they do not work or make clothes for themselves. 29 But I tell you that not even King Solomon with all his wealth had clothes as beautiful as one of these flowers. 30 It is God who clothes the wild grass—grass that is here today and gone tomorrow, burned up in the oven. Won’t he be all the more sure to clothe you? What little faith you have!
31 “So do not start worrying: ‘Where will my food come from? or my drink? or my clothes?’ 32 (These are the things the pagans are always concerned about.) Your Father in heaven knows that you need all these things. 33 Instead, be concerned above everything else with the Kingdom of God and with what he requires of you, and he will provide you with all these other things. 34 So do not worry about tomorrow; it will have enough worries of its own. There is no need to add to the troubles each day brings.
There is something special about the life of poverty. Poverty with intention can produce a special kind of understanding– an understanding full of the bliss of love.
There is no arguing, no convincing anyone– until the person takes a bite of the exotic fruit, they will not be capable of understanding it’s flavor. Take a bite. Practice fearlessness, live without worry, find stability in impermanence and interdependence.